philip lelyveld The world of entertainment technology

27Jul/16Off

A Profitable VR Company?! InsiteVR

InsiteVR makes it easy for enterprises, starting with the architecture market, to implement VR and AR solutions for their business needs. Angel Say and Russell Varriale were ambitious roommates at Columbia University, 3,000 miles from Silicon Valley and the headquarters of Oculus. They aren’t architects. They are engineers and problems solvers.

Architects shouldn’t have to learn Unity or another game development platform in order to use VR. Designers and architects need to stay within the confines of their current workflows. This realization made InsiteVR what they are today — a profitable enterprise SaaS business that lets architects use VR to share, collaborate, sell, and create.

InsiteVR got to where they are today through conservative cash management, obsessive customer empathy, and repurposing off the shelf technology to solve a particular problem. This is how you balance patience and growth as a VR startup. The InsiteVR team proved, in 2015 nonetheless, that virtual reality offered a positive ROI for commercial and residential architects. They are using 2016 to refine their business model, improve the product from (paying) customer feedback, and expand within their target market.

See the full story here: https://medium.com/@flinndustries/a-profitable-vr-company-18eb07a1475#.oj0amj9uz

27Jul/16Off

Absolut Vodka and Music Producer Deadmau5 Team Up On Virtual Reality

The marketing arm of vodka maker Absolut will debut a virtual reality video game on Wednesday that features Grammy-nominated electronic music producer Deadmau5.

The free game, Absolut deadmau5, works with the Google Cardboard VR viewing device, Facebook’s  FB 0.85%  Oculus Rift, and Samsung Gear VR headsets, according to Absolut’s website.

Absolut said that the game’s players take on the role of Deadmau5 as he prepares “to go on an epic night out.” Players start off in his garage and then guide him through several interactive mini-games as they head to the dance club and, if skilled enough, to his concert performance.

In an interview with technology publication Ars Technica earlier this month, Deadmau5 explained that the new game “was me getting my feet wet into VR, on a small scale, obviously.”

“Vive guy’s just gonna f***** laugh his ass off [using the Absolut app],” Deadmau5 said about Google Cardboard’s power compared to the higher-end HTC Vive. “But, Vive guy is one in 10,000 right now.”

NEW YORK, NY - MARCH 30: Rihanna, Nicki Minaj, Madonna, Deadmau5 and Kanye West attend the Tidal launch event #TIDALforALL at Skylight at Moynihan Station on March 30, 2015 in New York City. (Photo by Kevin Mazur/Getty Images For Roc Nation)

NEW YORK, NY - MARCH 30: Rihanna, Nicki Minaj, Madonna, Deadmau5 and Kanye West attend the Tidal launch event #TIDALforALL at Skylight at Moynihan Station on March 30, 2015 in New York City. (Photo by Kevin Mazur/Getty Images For Roc Nation)

 

See the full story here: http://fortune.com/2016/07/26/absolut-vodka-deadmau5-virtual-reality/

27Jul/16Off

Mack Trucks Offers Virtual Reality Rides in Certain Models

Mack Trucks said it now offers an online virtual reality test drive of models equipped with its mDrive HD 13-speed automated manual transmission, calling the experience a first for heavy-duty truck manufacturers. Virtual reality is a computer-generated simulation of a three-dimensional image or environment that can be interacted with in a seemingly physical way by placing the viewer’s perspective within the image or video itself, Mack said. Using virtual-reality headgear, Google Cardboard or a smartphone, viewers can look around 360 degrees to see the cab interior in its entirety as well as see what it feels like to be in the cab of a Mack model while it operates in quarries and on the highway, according to the Greensboro, North Carolina-based company. Mack is a unit of Sweden-based Volvo Group. For example, the virtual-reality experience showcases the power of its mDrive HD 13-speed as it frees the Mack Granite model from mud on a job site; as it easily drives up and down a steep grade without having to continuously apply brakes, reducing brake wear-and-tear; and as it smoothly manages a fully loaded Mack Pinnacle model up and down a 15% and a 20% grade, according to Mack. To experience Mack virtual reality, visit  http://www.macktrucks.com/VR. The virtual-reality videos also will be posted to the Mack website, but will not be as immersive as when Google Cardboard and the app are used, according to Mack.
See the original post with 360 video here: http://www.ttnews.com/articles/basetemplate.aspx?storyid=42668

27Jul/16Off

Skully has crashed and burned

screen-shot-2016-07-26-at-12-28-38-pmAugmented reality on mobile might be a hot topic right now thanks to Pokemon Go, but don't go thinking the tech's boom time has come. AR motorcycle startup Skully is just about dead, and has pretty much done everything you would to wind down but turn out the office lights. Skully's use of AR is fairly niche, of course, so it's not representative of the health of the market as a whole; it is, however, a sign that AR tech that requires dedicated hardware still has a steep hill to climb before achieving real market viability.

See the full story here: https://techcrunch.com/2016/07/26/once-promising-ar-motorcycle-helmet-startup-skully-has-crashed-and-burned/

27Jul/16Off

Apple’s future lies with AI and augmented reality, says CEO

Apple CEO Tim Cook has said his company is working on artificial intelligence (AI) and augmented reality technology in a bid to reassure investors amid flagging iPhone sales.

He stressed that Apple is "high on [augmented reality] for the long-run" and investing heavily.

Cook also highlighted Apple's investment in AI, which the company now uses to recommend content to users and even spot usage patterns to improve a device's battery life.

See the full story here: http://eandt.theiet.org/news/2016/jul/apple-ai-augmented-reality.cfm

27Jul/16Off

8 Drivers that will shape the future of virtual/augmented reality

augumented-realityPurpose

Affordability

Content

Accessibility

Usability

Comfort

Aesthetics

Safety and Health

See the full story here: https://yourstory.com/2016/07/future-virtual-augmented-reality/

27Jul/16Off

HoloLens concept lets you control your smart home via augmented reality

6e0f5ecb77b8f7a817569dfcef5a0f09“The primary goal of the app is to provide a 3D spatial UI for cross-platform devices — Android Music Player app and Arduino-controlled Fan and Light — and to interact with them using gaze and gesture control,” Ian Sterling, a design student at California College of the Arts, told Digital Trends.

Our demo featured a connection between a music player and a light in order to set a certain mood in your home.”

While the so-called IoTxMR concept is just a demo, Sterling thinks it signals the way our interactions with smart devices need to go.  “I feel that in order for smart devices to be less obtrusive, while at the same time becoming more robust in functionality, new forms of interaction will be a requirement,” he continues.

See the full story here: https://www.yahoo.com/tech/hololens-concept-lets-control-smart-162351903.html

26Jul/16Off

As Pokemon Popularizes Augmented Reality, Hollywood Explores AR’s Potential

microsoft_hololens_h_2016AR is poised to become ubiquitous, predicts Ben Grossmann, who won an Oscar for the visual effects on Hugo and is now a co-founder and CEO of Magnopus, a L.A.-based firm that is developing applications for AR and other emerging technologies.

Various Hollywood studios have already shown a keen interest in AR as well — among them is Twentieth Century Fox’s Fox Innovation Lab, which is testing systems such as the HoloLens.

AR "could be applied to all walks of life, in theory,” says Danny Kaye, executive vp of global research and technology strategy at Fox Home Entertainment, who also co-manages the Fox Lab.

“One of the most amazing things about the HoloLens is the tracking,” Grossmann explains. “Early AR systems gave people a headache because the latency between the graphics and real world would slip. The HoloLens nailed tracking and matches the real world. Plus it’s all mobile, so you have a platform to start imagining what's possible.”

See the full story here: http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/behind-screen/augmented-reality-post-pokemon-is-913390

26Jul/16Off

Magic Leap Officially Demoes Augmented Reality Shopping

The successful augmented reality startup, Magic Leap, just demo-ed their augmented reality shopping capabilities at a conference in China. The technology demonstrated makes shopping in your living room as immersive and engaging as you might imagine. The software also demonstrated the voice control capabilities that made perusing through the Chinese apps as seamless and effortless as you would hope.

Unfortunately, the conference was in China and thus speakers were only elaborating on the tech in Chinese,...

See the video here: http://tech.co/magic-leap-augmented-reality-shopping-demo-phase-2016-07

26Jul/16Off

HACKADAY PRIZE ENTRY: AUGMENTED REALITY FOR FIREFIGHTERS

6702271467476019680_featuredThere are more useful applications of augmented reality, as [vijayvictory]’s Hackaday Prize entry shows us. He’s built an augmented reality helmet for firefighters that will detect temperature, gasses, smoke and the user’s own vital signs, displaying the readings on a heads up display.

The core of the build is a Particle Photon, a WiFi-enabled microcontroller that also gives this helmet the ability to relay data back to a base station, ostensibly one that’s not on fire. To this, [vijayvictory] has added an accelerometer, gas sensor, and a beautiful OLED display mounted just behind a prism. This display overlays the relevant data to the firefighter without obstructing their field of vision.

See the full story here: https://hackaday.com/2016/07/24/hackaday-prize-entry-augmented-reality-for-firefighters/